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Sandri v. Finance System of Green Bay Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin

January 29, 2019

DOREAN A. SANDRI, individually and on behalf of all those similarly situated, Plaintiff,
v.
FINANCE SYSTEM OF GREEN BAY INC. and JOHN DOES, Defendants.

          DECISION AND ORDER

          William C. Griesbach, Chief Judge United States District Court

         Plaintiff Dorean A. Sandri filed this lawsuit on behalf of herself and all those similarly situated against Defendant Finance System of Green Bay Inc. and several John Does (collectively, FSGB), alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq. Sandri claims FSGB sent her form letters about a debt she incurred for personal, family, or household purposes that contained statements that are false, deceptive, and misleading. The complaint alleges FSGB sent similar letters to other consumers. On August 28, 2018, FSGB filed a motion to consolidate this case with Larkin v. Finance System of Green Bay Inc., Case No. 18-cv-496 (E.D. Wis.), and to dismiss the case for lack of jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim. On September 20, 2018, the court stayed the case pending its ruling on the motion to dismiss in Larkin. The court lifted the stay on November 15, 2018, in light of its decision in Larkin to grant the motion to dismiss and dismiss the case. FSGB has since withdrawn its motion to consolidate as moot. The motion to dismiss in this case is now fully briefed and ready for resolution. For the following reasons, the motion to dismiss will be granted.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         A motion to dismiss tests the sufficiency of the complaint to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Gibson v. City of Chicago, 910 F.2d 1510, 1520 (7th Cir. 1990); see Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). When reviewing a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), the court must accept all well-pleaded factual allegations as true and draw all inferences in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. Gutierrez v. Peters, 111 F.3d 1364, 1368-69 (7th Cir. 1997); Mosley v. Klincar, 947 F.2d 1338, 1339 (7th Cir. 1991). Rule 8 mandates that a complaint need only include “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). The plaintiff's short and plain statement must “give the defendant fair notice of what the claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). While a plaintiff is not required to plead detailed factual allegations, it must plead “more than labels and conclusions.” Id. A simple, “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.” Id. A claim is plausible on its face when “the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 663 (2009).

         ALLEGATIONS OF THE COMPLAINT

         Sandri, who is a Wisconsin resident, originally incurred a debt to a healthcare provider. FSGB, a corporation incorporated under the laws of Wisconsin with its principal place of business in Green Bay, Wisconsin, engages in the collection of debts owed to others. On August 6, 2017, FSGB mailed a form debt-collection letter to Sandri, attempting to collect a debt in the amount of $140.60 that was originally owed to Green Bay Radiology SC. The letter identifies the creditor as GREEN BAY RADIOLOGY S.C. and lists its address and telephone number. The letter provides:

Once in a while despite good intentions bills become past due and we realize it.
Your creditor is interested in you preserving a good credit rating with them.
GREEN BAY RADIOLOGY S.C. is a separate billing office from the hospital; therefore they may not have received your insurance information. Please call them to verify the insurance information has been given.
If you have any questions, please contact the above creditor at 920-336-4096.
Unless you notify this office within 30 days after receiving this notice that you dispute the validity of this debt or any portion thereof, this office will assume this debt is valid. If you notify this office in writing within 30 days from receiving this notice that you dispute the validity of this debt or any portion thereof, this office will obtain verification of the debt or obtain a copy of a judgment and mail you a copy of such judgment or verification. If you request this office in writing within 30 days after receiving this notice, this office will provide you with the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor.

         ECF No. 1-1 at 2.

         On August 22, 2017, FSGB sent Sandri a second letter. The letter included the following language:

         THIS IS OUR ...


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